I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of my first child with me being at 39 weeks and still counting. Pregnancy does some interesting things to your worldview, to your mind and even to your body. Nine months doesn’t seem like a very long period of time. A lot can happen over the course of nine months. In some ways, I am more comfortable being myself than I was before I am facing the prospect of motherhood. In other aspects, I am starting to realize that I still have some healing to do when it comes to coping with my past.
On Monday, I had a prenatal appointment with my OB/Gyn who is monitoring my pregnancy. Sleep towards the end of pregnancy can be elusive at best. As a mother to be it can be hard to get physically comfortable, your bladder may need to be emptied multiple times in one night, and your brain becomes overactive with the fears surrounding motherhood. The night before my appointment I slept maybe a total of four hours. My doctor had to conduct an internal exam, which most of the time would be unpleasant yet something I could easily cope with. This time I didn’t find it so easy to cope with someone having to enter my intimate personal space. I managed to soothe myself afterwards, but being triggered is not something that happens too often these days. Point is that no matter how much healing I have done; being a survivor is always going to have an impact on my life whether I like it or not. The desire for a healthy baby has helped a great deal in coping with my discomfort.
Handling a trigger can be a mysterious thing at times. What may set me off can also be surprising. I have personal issues with being touched by someone who I don’t know that well even if the reason is a good one. Now a nurse or a doctor when I go into labour will check how much I am dilated to decide what interventions if any are necessary. Most health care providers have been good enough to tell me before they do an examination, or initiate a medical procedure to tell me what they are doing. This communication helps me to mentally prepare myself to stop my anxiety from escalating. Truthfully, I am a little scared about what may happen when I go into labour, but I also know that I am a strong woman and women have been giving birth to healthy babies for thousands of years.
Earlier today reflected one way in, which my comfort being in my own skin has changed. I have times when I feel pretty good about my body even though I have a large baby bump. My sister and I decided to go swimming at a local pool to try to beat the heat and humidity. The only swimsuit that fits me at the moment was my bikini. The bikini is blue with black tiger stripes, and not what I normally would wear. It’s strange when you realize that your body is healthy and strong enough to carry life then you develop a greater love for it. I NEVER would have worn a bikini at a public pool or beach in my twenties. Reason for this is I didn’t feel confident in my own skin back then.
In my process of growing I feel like I can accept certain aspects of myself very easily, while others still need a little bit more love and acceptance. I suppose that is the contradictory nature of being in my own skin. It is a continual growth process that I am enjoying even when I bump up against those moments of discomfort. Life is about growth and change. It would be boring if we did not learn.